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Food Allergy Protection in New Jersey

  • NJ State SealA key component of inspections conducted at wholesale food establishments by the New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services’ Food and Drug Safety Program staff is the evaluation of product labels to determine if food allergens utilized as ingredients are properly declared on the finished product ingredient label. In addition, inspectors evaluate the potential for allergen cross-contact when companies produce multiple products, not all of which contain common allergens, in the same facility. Cross contact can occur when several foods are made using the same processing equipment, when allergen-containing products are processed before non-allergen containing products, or when equipment sanitation is inadequate.
  • In 2003, a law was passed in New Jersey calling on the Commissioner of Health and Senior Services to adapt rules and regulations, including proper medical protocols, that would authorize all Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) to have access to, and to administer epinephrine to a person experiencing an allergic reaction. The new rules and regulations are nearing completion.
  • In 2004, the New Jersey Legislature passed a resolution which urges school districts to acquaint personnel with the dangers of peanut allergy and to establish peanut-free cafeteria areas.
  • In 2005, a bill was signed into law in New Jersey which calls for the creation of a public information campaign, known as “Ask Before You Eat,” designed to inform the public about food allergies and anaphylaxis. The new law also calls for the creation of a fact sheet on nut allergies, which will be distributed to local boards of health, local health officers, and restaurants.

 


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